Shasta County was one of the original counties of California, created in 1850 at the time of statehood. Parts of the county's territory were given to Siskiyou County in 1852, and to Tehama County in 1856.
The county was named after Mount Shasta; the name is derived from the English equivalent for the Shasta people, the name of a Native American tribe that once lived in the area, but they were ethnically cleansed from the area in the 1850s. The name of the tribe was spelled in various ways until the present version was used when the county was established. Originally Mt. Shasta was within the county, but it is now part of Siskiyou County, to the north. Its 14,179-foot (4,322 m) peak is visible throughout most of Shasta County.
According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 3,847 square miles (9,960 km2), of which 3,775 square miles (9,780 km2) is land and 72 square miles (190 km2) (1.9%) is water. Mountains line the county on the east, north and west. The Sacramento River flows out of the mountains to the north, through the center of the county, and toward the Sacramento Valley to the south.
Flora and fauna
According to Willis Linn Jepson the biota of Shasta County were not explored in a scientific manner until just before the year 1900. Up until the 1920s the Southern Pacific Railroad Company owned vast tracts of natural grasslands; however, during the 1920s the railroad sold off much of its grassland holdings, leading to the rapid clearing of brush and large scale conversion from habitat to agricultural uses. Shasta County has extensive forests, which cover over one half the land area with commercially productive forest systems. Common forest alliances include mixed oak woodland and mixed conifer-oak woodland as well as douglas fir forest. Common trees found include White-bark pine,California Black Oak and California Buckeye.
Shasta at one time favored the Democratic Party in Presidential elections. It went Democratic in all but one presidential election from 1932 to 1976, and was one of the few counties in the state to be won by George McGovern. However, since 1980, it has become one of the most Republican counties in the state in Presidential and congressional elections. The last Democrat to win a majority in the county was Jimmy Carter in 1976.
Presidential elections results
Shasta County vote by party in presidential elections
There were 63,426 households, out of which 31.7% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 53.0% were married couples living together, 11.9% had a female householder with no husband present, and 30.6% were non-families. 24.7% of all households were made up of individuals, and 10.2% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.52 and the average family size was 2.98.
In the county, the population was spread out, with 26.1% under the age of 18, 8.2% from 18 to 24, 25.3% from 25 to 44, 25.2% from 45 to 64, and 15.2% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 39 years. For every 100 females there were 95.1 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 91.2 males.
The median income for a household in the county was $34,335, and the median income for a family was $40,491. Males had a median income of $35,959 versus $24,773 for females. The per capita income for the county was $17,738. About 11.3% of families and 15.4% of the population were below the poverty line, including 21.0% of those under age 18 and 7.3% of those age 65 or over.
Government and policing
Shasta County government
Shasta County Sheriff
The sheriff provides prison administration and coroner services for the entire county and patrol, investigative, and coroner services for the unincorporated portions of the county.
Redding and Anderson have municipal police departments.
Kool April Nites (April): A classic car show
Rodeo Week Festivities (May)
Art Fair and Fiddler's Jamboree (May)
Whiskeytown Regatta (May)
Watershed Festival (May)
Strawberry Festival (May)
Shasta Dragonwood Celtic Faire (May)
Redding Exchange Club Air Show (June)
Shasta District Fair (June)
Fall River Valley Century Bike Ride (July)
Fourth of July Fireworks Celebration (July)
Burney Basin Days (July)
Fall River Valley Wild Rice Festival (Aug)
Intermountain Fair, Fall River Valley (September) The Shasta County Fair
Stillwater Pow Wow (September)
Walk To End Alzheimer's (September)
Big Bike Weekend (October)
Fall River Valley Lights of Christmas Parade (December)
^Mary C. Brinton, Victor Nee and Robert K. Merton (2001) The New Institutionalism in Sociology, Stanford University Press ISBN 0-8047-4276-6, 352 pages
^Forest Survey Release (1952) By California Forest and Range Experiment Station, Berkeley, California, no. 13-3
^George Bishop Sudworth (1908) Forest Trees of the Pacific Slope, United States Forest Service, published by the United States G.P.O., Washington DC
^C. Michael Hogan. 2008. Aesculus californica, Globaltwitcher.com, ed. N. Stromberg "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2012-11-22. Retrieved 2012-11-26.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)